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First Name: Samuel

Last Name: Ringgold

Birthplace: Hagerstown, MD, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Date of Birth: 1796

Date of Death: 11 May 1846

Rank: Major

Years Served:
Samuel Ringgold

•  Mexican-American Wars (1846 - 1848)


Samuel Ringgold
Major, U.S. Army

Samuel Ringgold was born in 1796 at Hagerstown, MD.

Ringgold was a member of the Class of 1818 at the U.S. Military Academy, graduating fifth in the class. He was noted for several military innovations and is regarded as the "Father of the Flying Artillery." He raised the levels of American light artillery using McClellan military saddle artillery techniques and demonstrated their effectiveness during the Mexican-American War.

On 8 May 1846, at the Battle of Palo Alto, TX, he advanced his artillery to attack the enemy while gallantly directing fire of the battery of horse artillery under his command. He was mortally wounded there, but refused to leave the field and his tactics won the battle for the Americans. He survived three days, during which time he debriefed on the battle, before dying from his wounds.

News of his death made him a national a hero and the Army adapted his manual, "Instructions for Field Artillery."


His father was U.S. Congressman Samuel Ringgold and his brother was Navy Rear Admiral Cadwalader Ringgold.

Death and Burial

Major Samuel Ringgold died on 11 May 1846 in Port Isabel, TX. He is buried next to his brother, Navy Rear Admiral Cadwalader Ringgold, at Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore, MD.

Honoree ID: 3003   Created by: MHOH




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